Ali Abubakar Sadiq writes from Kano
Even though, I was very early on in the Corona Virus Pandemic, very apprehensive to the point of being labeled an alarmist or paranoid, I devoted my pen in the last eight weeks writing on the threat of corona pandemic to our vulnerable community in Nigeria.
I began with my first article on the issue “Corona Virus: An Existential threat” published by Blaze News on the 20th of March, and the Hausa Version published earlier in the month in Leadership Newspaper and on social media. Since then, every week I write on one topic or another related to the pandemic.
I have never been so apprehensive as last week when I woke up to the sad news of an explosion of deaths in metropolitan Kano, amongst which is the long list of our luminaries and academics in a space of one single day. A friend from Lagos reached out to me to confirm if the news on social media of the list of people declared dead were true and I replied him in the affirmative.
Among the list of those fallen heroes were Professor Ibrahim Ayagi, one of the leading economist in this country, Prof Ali Dikko, Prof Ali Ungogo, Dr Musa Umar Gwarzo, Dr Nasiru Maikano, Fmr Grand Khadi Dahiru Rabiu, Fmr Editor Triumph Newspaper Malam Musa Tijjani, Fmr Executive Secretary Subeb Adamu Isyaku Dal and many more.
The first thing that comes to my attention is a nagging suspicion that those people may have died from Covid considering their demography fits victims of corona virus death the world over.
The past two weeks, Kano had seen an unprecedented burial in cemeteries across the metropolitan area and as people began to question the circumstances I saw the state governor on Channels debunking any connection with Covid but promised further investigations.
What alarmed me more was the closure of the only testing center at AKTH for days as the governors insist on seeking a sum of 15 Billion intervention from the Federal Government.
Are we being held in ransom? I remembered Lagos state had structure in place ranging from testing capacity, tracing, isolation and palliatives out of their own purse before the Federal Government supported them with 10 Billion and locked down the state.
The Kano Covid committee was in shambles since the infection of the chairman and members of his team.
They have prior raised about 400 million from citizens but we never heard a single commitment of funds set aside by the state government to confront this war.
Kano had been on lockdown for two weeks (with a few hours break on the eve of Ramadan) and with the continuing lackadaisical attitude from the state government the alarm bell is at it’s loudest.
As both the deaths and lockdown continues, coupled with Ramadan and civil servants not getting their salaries and the populace without palliatives, I fear the looming catastrophe in Kano if nothing concrete was done.
The government isn’t doing anything, the elites are only talking without any concerted effort to tackle the problem. It was a scary scenario and I was confused.
Then succor came as Khurairat called me from New York. I poured my fears and painted the grim reality as it unfolds, she immediately realizes the gravity of the situation and asked me to immediately write to the first lady Aisha Buhari but later decided it would be better if I could make an audio appeal.
I made a passionate appeal on audio that evening and sent it to her. A few hours later she called back and informed me that the first lady had received it and lets cross our fingers and hope she do something urgently.
48 hours later I woke up to the exhilarating news carried by NAN “500,000 Households to benefit from Aisha Buhari’s Donation in Kano” The story informed that 16 Trucks of assorted food items (rice, spaghetti, cooking oil) for distribution to households was sent out to Kano to ease the pressure of lockdown on the poor masses of the state.
She also donated PPE’s (personal protective equipment) for distribution to our gallant soldiers on the frontline of this war (the Doctors, Nurses and other Healthcare workers).
Among the medical equipment were 300,000 face masks, 300,000 surgical gloves, 300,000 hand sanitizers and 10 automatic dispensers. There were also drugs sent alongside, some of which will be kept at Aisha Buhari Hospital and the rest distributed to the public. To say I am overwhelmed will be an understatement.
This is Kano state that boasts of many fathers, amongst which are the President himself, the Governor, the Emirs (past and present) two of the richest guys at least in the continent if not in the world, but I dare say none had personally intervened at the right time or in the right way like this great mother did.
Indeed the duo of our leading bourgeoisie had offered billions to both the federal and state government (with even isolation centers which made me question their sincerity as they made no effort in test center or direct palliatives to the poor).
The Federal Government had to wait until the death skyrocketed and the only test center comatose before sending a special committee.
The state government is being superficial in its response as it doesn’t even have functioning committee for Covid since the chairman and his members got infected.
After seeking and getting the approval to borrow 50 billion by the state government, why can’t the governor re-direct part of the loan to fight covid? Why wait for federal assistance of 15 billion? Now that the President had shunned the request, what plan is the state government having on the table to fund the fight?
Aisha Buhari had indeed shown to Kanawa she is a real mother, like all real mothers she responds to our cries without a moment of delay and renders the kind of help Kano people need in this material time (palliatives in terms of food, medicines and medical equipments) not the superficial help of building isolation centers when you don’t have functioning test centers.
The war on covid, as successful nations that curved its menace had shown, is through widespread testing, tracing and isolation. With over ten million people in Kano and one epileptic test center, the war against Covid in Nigeria will prove to be illusionary unless government focuses more attention on creating more test centers.
Countries like Sweden haven’t been in lockdown since the outbreak of the pandemic, but only emphasize on social distancing measures and constant testing. China, Japan, South Korea are on the brink of defeating the epidemic in their countries with rigid regime of testing, tracing and isolation.
All over the world countries are re-opening their economies as sustained lockdowns are not feasible. We have to channel resources to fight this pandemic in our country by increasing our capacity to test more people.
The reason why people dying in Kano are attributed to a mysterious death was only because we don’t test people for the disease or perform autopsy on the dead. But I am sure if all the dead in the past few weeks were to be exhumed and tested, most of them could be attributed to covid as they fall into the demography of covid victims around the world.
As the fight against Covid continues in Kano and the country at large, Aisha Buhari had indeed proven to be a mother for Kanawa that stood for her children in times of need and it should be a wake-up call to our numerous fathers out there to imitate this pure motherly love and discard ALL political and economic interest to act in unison to fight this deadly disease in Kano because without defeating it here, the chances of defeating it in the country will remain a mirage.
The information contained in this post is for general information purposes only. Opinion articles, comments are solely the responsibility of the author and does not necessarily reflect the views of BlazeNewz while we endeavour to keep the information accurate with objectivity as we adhere to global practice of journalism. Read our full Disclaimer.
Politics1 year ago
Breaking: Appeal Court Sacks Ekiti APC Senator, Adeyeye Declares PDP, Olujimi Winner
News1 year ago
I’m Not Afraid Of Death– Obasanjo
Politics2 years ago
Rivers Guber ”In The End, It Will Be A Sweet Victory” Wike Tells Party Members
Foreign8 months ago
Breaking : Another Virus, Hantavirus Surfaces In China
Sponsored Posts2 years ago
Come And Learn Yoruba Traditional Druming and Dancing
Economy2 weeks ago
Cement Price Drops – Check Out The Current Price
Politics1 year ago
2023 Presidency : Northern Youths Drum Support For Tinubu, Lambast El-Rufai Over Zoning Comment
Entertainment2 years ago
FULL LIST: Beyonce, Jay Z, Ariana Grande, Others Win Big At 2019 Brit Awards